Women’s world No. 1 Yani Tseng of Taiwan has won all four tournaments she’s played in this year, but she’ll need to dig herself out of her deepest hole of the season if she wants to make it five in a row this weekend in Singapore.
Tseng, coming off wins in Australia and Thailand the past three weeks, struggled to an even-par 72 that left her eight shots behind Japan’s Chie Arimura after the second round of the LPGA Tour’s HSBC Women’s Champions in Singapore yesterday.
She overcame a seven-shot deficit to win her season opener, the Ladies Taifong Open in Taiwan last month, but the field in Singapore is considerably stronger.
Tseng enjoyed a solid start and finish to her round yesterday but suffered consecutive bogies at the ninth, 10th, and 11th holes.
She ended up tied for eighth with Morgan Pressel of the US with a two-round total of 142.
“I finished pretty bad I think, number nine, 10, feel very disappointed especially number nine,” said the 22-year-old Taiwanese star.
“That was an easy birdie for everybody and I just hit it into the water. But still have two days to go and I will do my best, try my best,” she said.
Arimura, who made six birdies and an eagle yesterday, shot a 66 to lead at 10-under-par.
“Two more days to go, I need to control my pace,” said Arimura, who plays mainly on the Japanese tour.
“Today has been a perfect example, I had a rough start but I controlled myself so it got better in the end,” said the leader, who is seeking her maiden victory outside Japan.
Two shots back in second was Karrie Webb, who also shot a 66 at the Tanah Merah Country Club.
“I feel great about it. You know, fairly solid round. I putted really well today,” said Webb, a seven-time Major winner who has than US$15 million in career earnings.
The 36-year-old Australian, who has won 36 titles on the LPGA Tour, fancies her chances to lift the trophy tomorrow after a solid second round in the sweltering heat.
“Yeah, it’s nice to be up there on Friday with a chance and making up a little bit of ground to even give myself a chance,” the Hall of Famer said.
Tseng had started the day tied for third just two shots behind Arimura and had a promising start with birdies at the first and fourth holes, but her struggles in the middle of the round left her unable to pressure the 23-year-old Japanese.
Defending champion Ai Miyazato of Japan is tied in 12th position along with eight others including US star Michelle Wie and Taiwan’s Candie Kung.
Compatriot Amy Hung finished with her second 73 of the tournament to find herself in a tie for 26th.